Last post on Jul 13, 2011 at 1:12 PM
You are in the Mazda Protege
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Mazda Protege5, Wagon
#2123 of 7874 OK, a question for all you P5 owners out there.
Dec 04, 2001 (12:36 pm)
Hi. I haven't posted here in a while, so let me introduce myself. (You'll know me -- probably a little TOO much -- if you ever visit the Mazda Protege topic.) I own a 2000 Protege ES 5-speed. It's my third Protege, so you might call me a Protege expert. (I'm the guy who has organized two Mid-Atlantic Protege Picnics in the past two years.)
OK, so we have established that I'm an expert on Protege sedans. Now for my question.
My wife's 1995 Crapalier (uh, Cavalier) has 53,000 miles on it, and by the way Chevy builds cars, it's ready for the junkyard. (Hey -- it's on its FOURTH head gasket. Need I say more?) We are VERY close (three weeks or less) to purchasing a new Protege5 for her.
My wife has a way of pulling up to a curb until her front wheels bounce off it. Looking at the P5, I'm a little scared. Just how low is that front air dam? It LOOKS low, but maybe it's just an illusion. Do you guys have to be extra careful when pulling up to those little concrete stops at parking lot spaces? Curbs? Etc.? Also, if there are any women out there who own P5s (sorry, I didn't check before posting this), do you have any ingress/egress trouble caused by the side aero effects on the car? Like when you're wearing business attire?
I just want to be aware of some of this stuff before purchasing. Thanks in advance!
Dec 04, 2001 (12:42 pm)
You'll DEFINATELY scrape on curbs and concrete risers. It's not ridiculously low, but it is THAT low to be sure.
You just have to be careful, that's all. The car has very short overhangs and is actually a few inches shorter overall then the sedan so it is VERY easy to park.
Dec 04, 2001 (2:21 pm)
The specifications from www.mazdausa.com states that the ground clearance of both Protege sedans and P5 are identical at 140mm. The MP3 is lower: 135mm. If their front bumper clearance differ (of sedans and P5), it should be a matter of milimeters, so always be careful.
I got an idea: why don't you trade cars with your dear spouse?
#2126 of 7874 Bruno...
Dec 04, 2001 (2:39 pm)
I know his spouse, and she can't drive stick. That's why.
Dec 04, 2001 (2:52 pm)
I owned a 97 protege prior to my 02 P5. The 97's lower bumper cowling would slightly drag on my car ramps before climbing to the top. I checked the P5 the other day and it appears they will clear them completly. So visually the P5 bumper only looks lower. In reality, their higher than the 97.
Dec 04, 2001 (3:24 pm)
The front air dam on the P5 is definitely low. For most people, all it takes is a single instance of hearing the bottom of your air dam grind away on concrete to teach you not to pull up so far next time. I have also very rarely had the air dam scrape on the roadway (yikes!) when entering or exiting a parking lot that happens to have a very steep pitch to it (up or down).
I had a recent opportunity to ride in a 4 door Cavalier sedan for about 6 hours and the Pro5 compares pretty favorably. The Cavalier has a less stiff suspension which makes it wallow a bit but also makes it ride a bit like a larger car. I thought the Cavalier's interior seemed cheap even compared to the Pro5. The Cavalier had ample power, at least as good as the Pro. The interior in my Pro5 SEEMS bigger than the Cavalier but this could just be an optical illusion. The only places the Cavalier clearly wins are in cupholders and the sound quality of the stereo (though it's typical Delco with tiny buttons and green on black display). If you can keep the wife from bashing the Pro5's front end into every bit of concrete she encounters, I think she'll love it.
Heck, I'm a college student and I love mine, mainly because it's fun to drive, looks good, and is practical (four doors, a roof rack, and cargo space DO tend to come in handy from time to time)
#2129 of 7874 Front air dams and stuff for mdaffron
Dec 04, 2001 (4:42 pm)
I have had no scraps with my p5... and I traded my truck in for the p5. So, if I could get use to a lower vehicle without any mishaps, maybe this will give you hope for your wife. I am careful moving around in parking lots... not just because of barriers to avoid, but because people drive like crazy sometimes... Anyway, enjoy the ride. I have put over 4000 miles on mine and just now crossed town zooming my way through traffic and enjoying it all the while. It is a fun car.
Dec 04, 2001 (10:01 pm)
Had my 5 for over 3 months now and i never once scraped the parking stop (little curb). Maybe its because i never pull in so far in. Why would you. The car is small and even fits into the sub-compact spaces where i park. I know exactly when to stop in the space and my front wheels don't even reach the curb. Its not exactly rocket science.
Dec 05, 2001 (6:16 am)
I like low-slung, sporty cars, but perhaps something with a little more clearance would be better for your wife, to be honest. A Subaru Outback Sport would give you an extra inch of clearance and an even higher front bumper.
From experience, my wife has scraped the bottom of the oil pan on our 626 many times, so our Forester is a bit more fault tolerant with her behind the wheel, if you know what I mean.
#2132 of 7874 Rear Door Speakers
Dec 05, 2001 (6:22 am)
I reviewed about 200 posts but couldn't find an answer to this question: What size speaker fits the rear door WITHOUT modification to either?